Blue (whole) and Trim (skimmed) Anchor Organic milk - packaged in Anchor's two-litre 100% recyclable lightproof bottle - will be available in supermarkets across New Zealand from May 18, and to cafes, foodservice outlets and dairies from this week.
In a statement, Fonterra said it is responding to growing demand from baristas and households in New Zealand, where it claims organic milk sales have increased more than 50% in the last year.
Organic milk is, however, "very expensive" in New Zealand and availability is limited to certain regions, it said. Accordingly, the Auckland-based dairy cooperative set itself the "mission" to make organic milk more widely available "at a fair price."
"We've done just that through our nationwide distribution and providing Anchor Organic at an everyday price that works out at only about 20 cents extra per glass compared to our standard Anchor milk," said Tim Deane, managing director, Fonterra Brands New Zealand.
"We're confident of a good response from consumers," he said. "72% of Kiwis tell us that if organic milk was more affordable they would buy it more often. A further 25% told us that it it was available in their regular supermarket that would also make a difference."
Anchor Organic will be sourced from Fonterra farmers in Manawatu on New Zealand's North Island.
In March, Fonterra announced it would begin offering organic milk producers an additional NZ$0.45 per kg of milk solids (kgMS) from June 1 in a bid to boost supply.
The NZ$0.45 increase will be paid on top of the NZ$1.05 per kgMS certified organic milk premium its organic suppliers already receive.
"All dairy farming is challenging, hard work," Deane continued. "However, organic farming costs more so we have to pay more for the milk."
"We also have the added complexity of keeping the milk separate through the collection and bottling process. So, there is a lot of effort on and off the farm that goes in to creating a certified organic product," he said.